Pioneers remain 10th in latest NCAA regional rankings

Pioneers remain 10th in latest NCAA regional rankings

INDIANAPOLIS --- The Tusculum women's basketball team remains 10th in the latest NCAA Division II Southeast Region rankings, which were released Wednesday.

The Pioneers (16-7) are 1-4 against teams in the Southeast Region rankings, owning a 74-51 win over seventh-ranked Anderson on Jan. 17 and a pair of losses to both top-ranked Carson-Newman and second-ranked Wingate. The second loss to Wingate, on Monday afternoon, was not factored into this week's rankings which had a cutoff date of Sunday.

Carson-Newman (25-1) is followed by Wingate (21-3) in the poll to give the South Atlantic Conference the top two positions. The committee switched positions for the next three pairs of teams, with Lander (21-5) up to third and North Georgia (22-4) sliding to fourth, Limestone (21-4) up to fifth and Barton (19-6) down to sixth, and Flagler (16-7) moving up to seventh and Anderson (17-9) dipping to eighth. Columbus State (16-8) replaced Georgia College in the ninth spot, with Tusculum remaining in 10th.

The tournament champions of the South Atlantic Conference, Conference Carolinas and Peach Belt Conference will receive automatic bids to the NCAA Division II Southeast Region tournament, with five at-large bids available for the eight-team field. Currently, four SAC schools (Carson-Newman, Wingate, Anderson, Tusculum) are in the regional top 10, along with four Peach Belt Conference teams (North Georgia, Lander, Flagler, Columbus State) and a pair of Conference Carolinas schools (Barton, Limestone).

The NCAA regional rankings are the official poll utilized by the NCAA in the championship selection process and will be released each week by the NCAA Division II Women's Basketball Committee up to the NCAA Championship selections.

Tusculum has two regular-season games left on its schedule, including a visit to Anderson on Wednesday at 6 p.m. followed by a trip to Newberry on Saturday at 2 p.m. The SAC Championship tournament begins Wednesday, Feb. 28 with the top four seeds hosting quarterfinal-round games.